By Shivi Verma February 2012 A miracle is a divine knock on the doors of our consensual reality that brings a message of hope, healing and transformation says Shivi Verma Who has not, at one point or the other, coveted a fairy’s magic wand that would set everything right? Human beings survive on hope when reality becomes too much to bear. They pray for a miracle – a welcome disruption in the neat mathematical order of life. The good news is that not only do people from all walks of life vouch that miracles happen, some say they have been ‘lucky’ more than once. Miracles confirm that fairy tales are not too off the mark; the world is indeed an enchanted place. Krishna revealed himself to Mira – did he not? And the tease that he is, he came just as she readied to jump into the river with the idol of her beloved pressed to her bosom. Miracles come to us so we can be transformed into the wonderful people we never knew we could be. What all the preaching, teaching, lecturing, sermonising, threatening, warning and punishing in the world cannot do, a miracle can. Miracles are known to bring about a paradigm shift in our outlook, thinking, behaviour and conduct. Miracles and I My own interest in spirituality was sparked off by some miracles that forced me to acknowledge that there was indeed a higher force behind the world perceived through the senses. I was a 23-year-old student of Mass Communication and journalism in Aligarh University, when I decided to believe a classmate who told me that Hanuman was his friend. The two – deity and devotee – often met in the boy’s dreams and had long discussions. On a sunny day, Lt Col Sandeep Sharma idly wished for a rainbow. In fi ve minutes clouds formed and a sharp shower ensued, ending in the manifestation of two rainbows! I liked the idea of Hanuman making small talk in the boy’s dreams and decided that I wanted to do it too. I took to invoking Hanuman myself. I asked the Lord to appear in my dreams too. Sadly, my sleep remained uninterrupted by divine visitations. However, as the days rolled on, I began to feel a warm protective presence around me – a feeling of being looked after. I sensed that I was experiencing my own miracle. A few days later, at the girl’s hostel where I stayed, I had to deal with a mini-emergency. I needed to see my local guardian rather urgently. There were no mobile phones back then, and while we did have a landline at the hostel that we were allowed to use, I had been unable to get through despite repeated attempts. I began to pray to Hanuman. I needed my guardian to be under the banyan tree that stood in front of the gate of the hostel at noon the very next day. I prayed hard till I slept. The next day, at 11:55 am, I walked towards the gate all dressed for the day and prayed at every step for my miracle to happen. And there he was! He was indeed waiting under the banyan tree for me. I glanced at my watch. It was 12 0’ clock sharp. My guardian clarified that he had been passing by and had decided to see me before proceeding further. He had parked his car outside, written my name on a slip and given it to a girl entering the gate. “Did you get the slip?” he asked. Well, truth be told, it was I who had sent the divine slip and he who had received it! I marvelled at the miracle. My prayers were answered. The incident taught me something of great value. This world is not as rigid as it appears. Happy disruptions Asha Uberoy became a thiest after experiencing a life-saving miracle The world is a continuum of rippling thoughts and desires that mish-mash and crisscross to create the tangible picture we call life. Miracles tell us that one’s will is the biggest tool one has to forge one’s destiny. After all, is a miracle not our own will, attracting divine grace and materialising a desired outcome? However, a miracle can only be termed a miracle when you gain an insight that a divine power bypassed natural laws in order to favour you in a given moment. It can be a sudden healing, a chance meeting with a dear one lost long ago, or the sudden appearance of a saviour in an hour of distress followed by an as sudden disappearance once the situation is resolved. It is also a miracle when the veil of duality lifts and the truth, like a shining mirror, is laid bare to us. Inner transformation Shreesh Tongaonkar (35) an advertising professional, says it is only a miracle if it changes something inside us for the better. “If it deepens your faith or removes at least one of your negatives then it is a miracle. The change the miracle brings in you is the accomplishment of the miracle.” Lt Col Sandeep Sharma (44) was posted in Kashmir five years ago. Travelling in a gypsy along a thin mountainous road on a bright sunny day, he idly wished for a rainbow. It would make his beautiful drive perfect. Barely five minutes passed before clouds swept up on the sky, obscured the sun and released a sharp shower. And behold, two parallel rainbows appeared in the sky. On a rainy day, Amit Raissoni and his wife gave two girls a lift in their auto. The very next day, while waiting for a taxi, two men stopped and gave them a lift Sandeep halted his car and stood transfixed at the sight. Tears of gratitude rolled down his cheeks. He found himself dancing with joy in the rain. “The exhilaration I felt at having a wish fulfilled in such a magnanimous and mind-blowing way stays etched in my heart till date,” Sandeep says. Asha Uberoi (69), a resident of Gurgaon, was travelling by car to Jaipur with her husband one November morning. They started out at 4 am to avoid the heavy traffic that inevitably built up along the route later in the day. To their disappointment, they found the entire highway enveloped in dense fog, which reduced visibility to 4 to 5 feet from the vehicle. There was also the ever present fear of collision with other vehicles and the danger of the car slipping off the winding roads on the steep Aravalli ranges with its treacherously deep valleys. The couple froze with fear and while they were wondering what to do next, they heard the honking of a truck approaching them from the rear. As the gaily painted truck crossed them, they spotted some colourful lights at its back. The couple decided to follow the lights. Asha was not a religious person. “A background in science made me immune to religiosity in many ways. I did not believe in God or destiny and took pride in being practical and self-reliant. But on that day, I forgot all about my self-reliance and repeated all the prayers I could dredge from my memory.” Mystery truck Amit Raisonni believes that miracles are a result of your good karma The truck driver, on the other hand, seemed to have no care in the world. He rode at normal speed through the dense fog, and his back lights offered safe passage to Asha and her husband. After about an hour the fog lifted and the sun came out and almost immediately, Asha chided herself for getting into prayer mode and seeking divine help. They sighted a roadside tea stall and saw the ‘merry’ truck parked a few feet away. Asha ran towards the truck to thank the driver but in the 10 seconds it took her to cover the distance the truck disappeared. There was no truck there! Asha shook up the sleepy chaiwallah. “Where is that truck which was standing over here a few seconds ago?” she asked. “Truck, what truck? You are my first customer,” said the man. Asha remembered the story of the young fatherless boy who followed his mother’s advice to call on his friend Govinda whenever he experienced the fear of wild animals on his way to school. The boy did this every time he crossed the dense jungle and a beautiful boy with a flute in hand and peacock feather in his turban appeared and walked him through. Years later, only when he became an old man, did the little boy realise that God had answered his simple faith by appearing in person. “Faith is indeed more powerful than doubt,” says a beaming Asha. Karmic play Nishi Malhotra (40), a resident of Washington DC, and an employee with the World Bank, recalls, “My grandmother was in coma for many days before she died. Everybody was praying for her suffering to end. Even today while my husband frets when faced with a crunch, I simply sit back knowing that I am being taken care of by the Almighty. Suddenly, she sat up bolt upright in bed. ‘I have been where I am supposed to go but I have been denied entry. I have been told to visit the Sisganj Gurudwara (in Delhi) and pray before I can be allowed entry,’ she announced. She got out of the bed, visited the Gurudwara, prayed, came home, lay on the bed and died immediately. “This miracle convinced me that there is more to reality than the one we live. What we call life is but one stop in a journey we don’t know much about. What is important is to live this experience fully and consciously,” reflects Nishi. The incident, as is to be expected, made Nishi ponder over the nature of life and death and the transience of all that is. Amit Raisonni (33), an event manager based in Mumbai, believes that miracles have a karmic basis. “On a madly rainy, windy day, as my wife and I finally entered the auto rickshaw we had spent several cold and agonisingly wet minutes waiting for, two shivering girls appeared out of nowhere. They asked us to take them in but the auto driver refused to ply more than three persons. I bribed the auto driver with an extra Rs 10 so all four of us could squeeze inside. We dropped the girls home safely. Rachana Bhatt says that her whole life is woven around miracles The very next day our long wait for a taxi in Dhobi Talao, Mumbai, concluded when two kind men in a
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